Photo of Anita Kärner Köhler

Anita Kärner Köhler

Senior Associate Professor

I am an associate professor in Caring Sciences. My research regards patients’ learning processes related to lifestyle habits and patient education to support a healthy lifestyle when living with coronary heart disease (CHD).

Beliefs about lifestyle habits after coronary heart disease – a start for pedagogical interventions

As a starting point in theory about patient empowerment I study effects of problem-based learning (PBL) on self-care after an event of CHD.

My major research interest during the latest years has concerned what effect PBL as at method in patient education in primary care has after CHD. The research focus is on beliefs about lifestyle habits and life in general after the cardiac event.

I am leading a group consisting of researchers with competence in Medical Pedagogics, Nursing, Cardiology, General Practice, Statistics and Health Economy. 

About me


  • Associate professor 2021
  • Docent in caring science 2018
  • PhD in Medal science 2004
  • Master Public health science 2001
  • Registered Nurse 1986

Other assignments

  • Project leader for the COR-PRIM study. 
  • Member of a National network for problem-based learning within higher education for teachers, students and pedagogical developers. 
  • Member of a regional network CESAR aiming for cardiovascular research within caring science. 


Selected publications

Cover of publication ''
Anita Kärner Köhler, Tiny Jaarsma, Pia Tingström, Staffan Nilsson (2020)

BMC Cardiovascular Disorders , Vol.20 Continue to DOI

Cover of publication ''
Anita Kärner Köhler, Pia Tingström, Tiny Jaarsma, Staffan Nilsson (2018)

BMC Family Practice , Vol.19 Continue to DOI

Cover of publication ''
Johan Lundgren, Peter Johansson, Tiny Jaarsma, Gerhard Andersson, Anita Kärner Köhler (2018)

Journal of Medical Internet Research , Vol.20 Continue to DOI

Latest publications


Magda Eriksson-Liebon, Anita Kärner Köhler, Peter Johansson, Ghassan Mourad (2024) Living with non-cardiac chest pain - An inductive qualitative interview study of spouses' perspectives Nursing Open, Vol. 11, Article e2189 Continue to DOI


Amanda Feldt, Anita Kärner Köhler, Sara Bergstrand (2023) Nurses strategies to enable continuous positive airway pressure therapy in a general medical ward context: A qualitative study Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, Vol. 37, p. 524-533 Continue to DOI
Christina Andreae, Pia Tingström, Staffan Nilsson, Tiny Jaarsma, Nadine Karlsson, Anita Kärner Köhler (2023) Does problem-based learning improve patient empowerment and cardiac risk factors in patients with coronary heart disease in a Swedish primary care setting? A long-term prospective, randomised, parallel single randomised trial (COR-PRIM) BMJ Open, Vol. 13, Article e065230 Continue to DOI


Ongoing projects


A randomized study aiming to evaluate whether PBL has effects on beliefs about lifestyle habits, patient empowerment and self-efficacy to manage self-care after a cardiac event. The main study started in 2011 and 157 patients have been followed-up 1-, 3- and 5 years after the PBL intervention. The research team from HMV, LiU are: Staffan Nilsson, docent, Pia Tingström, associate professor and Tiny Jaarsma, professor.  

Another study within COR-PRIM performed by Josabeth Hultberg, G.P and PhD student, regards how patients’ deal with cardiovascular medication. I am co-supervisor for JH. Main supervisor is Staffan Nilsson, G.P and docent HMV, LiU and co-supervisor is Carl-Edvard Rudebeck, professor.  

I am also involved in a study about relatives’ experiences of living with a person with unexplained chest pain. Project leader is Ghassan Mourad, university lecturer at HMV, LiU.

A new project idea is research about recovery and new comprehension despite psychotic disorder. This idea is developed in collaboration with Patrik Rytterström and Rikard Wärdig, both are specialist nurses in psychiatry and have a PhD degree.  


Related research



I am course coordinator in a new generic course Systematic physical examination, advanced health assessment and clinical reasoning, 7.5 credits, that starts in autumn 2020. The course is given to students specializing as district nurses; for medical care and surgical care. 

I teach and I am examiner in different courses within specialist nursing programs oriented to medical care. I also tutor and examine essays on advanced level.  

In the Nursing program, ground level I mainly teach in semester 5 and 6. The teaching consist of tutoring base groups and essay writing, which I also examine. In semester 6 I am examiner for seminars about caring science and for the practical part of the national final examination.